Day 17: Tuesday, April 21
“It was said, ‘Whoever divorces his wife must give her a legal document.’ But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except for immorality, makes her commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.
“Again, you have heard that it was said to an older generation, ‘Do not break an oath, but fulfill your vows to the Lord.’ But I say to you, do not take oaths at all—not by heaven, because it is the throne of God, not by earth, because it is his footstool, and not by Jerusalem, because it is the city of the great King.
Do not take an oath by your head, because you are not able to make one hair white or black. Let your word be ‘Yes, yes’ or ‘No, no.’ More than this is from the evil one.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, do not resist the evildoer. But whoever strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other to him as well. And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your coat also. And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two. Give to the one who asks you, and do not reject the one who wants to borrow from you.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbour’ and ‘hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be like your Father in heaven, since he causes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Even the tax collectors do the same, don’t they? And if you only greet your brothers, what more do you do? Even the Gentiles do the same, don’t they? So then, be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
The Scriptures quoted are from the NET Bible® http://netbible.com copyright ©1996, 2019 used with permission from Biblical Studies Press, L.L.C. All rights reserved.
COMMENT & QUESTIONS
In this passage, followers of Jesus are called to live a life that shocking and opposite to how the world behaves. In what ways are non-Christians surprised by your behaviour?
Non-Christians are often surprised by big outward actions like our stance on abortion, drunkenness, sexual ethics, language. But non-Christians ought to be surprised by our unchanging character. Maybe at work they notice our unwavering honesty when we don't claim extra hours on our time sheet. Maybe they notice at school that we don't join in on the bullying or teasing of other students. Maybe they notice that we are not motivated by money and possessions. Above all else, they would hopefully notice that we are not enslaved to any sin, but we freely serve God.
Pray that you will have the strength to turn the other cheek and go the second mile Pray for your enemies and those who persecute you Pray that your ‘yes’ be ‘yes’ and your ‘no’ be ‘no’